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July 30, 2007



This company, which offers dogs for “rent” for a few hours or days to anyone willing to pay hefty annual, monthly, and per-visit fees. Flexpetz claims that it provides an option for “responsible” people who are unable or unwilling to give an animal a lifetime home. It is hardly responsible, however, to treat a dog like a DVD rental. DVDs get damaged and can be lost, and the same can happen to animals.

Dogs are creatures of habit who need and deserve a family, routine, stability, and consistency in order to thrive and be happy. Being bounced around from place to place is terribly confusing to them and deprives them of a permanent place to call home. Flexpetz is a business, and as such, it exists only to make money.Unfortunately, it does so at the expense of the psychological well-being of the animals it uses to make a profit. Flexpetz caters to human convenience and sends the wrong message―that it is acceptable to trade dogs as if they were video games.

It appears that many or all of the dogs used by Flexpetz are purebreds. While some were reportedly rescued, others appear to have come from breeders. Any purchase of an animal from a breeder or pet store takes away a chance for a shelter animal to find a home and perpetuates the companion animal overpopulation crisis

Furthermore, when Flexpetz animals become ill or old and can no longer be rented out, what will happen to them? Will they be kenneled indefinitely or placed in permanent, safe homes or will they just continue to be rented out until they die?

I would like to encourage people who have the time, resources, and willingness necessary for making a dog a member of their family to adopt from animal shelters. Because of the lack of good homes, 3 million to 4 million unwanted dogs and cats must be put to death in U.S. animal shelters annually. People who are not ready to “tie the canine knot” but wish to spend time with dogs are encouraged to volunteer at their local animal shelter, where they can walk, play with, groom, and socialize dogs in need.

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